Home Health Zapping brain cancer with long needles opens door to new treatments: USask research – News

Zapping brain cancer with long needles opens door to new treatments: USask research – News

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In this technique, a long needle is inserted into the skull and pulses of electrical current are sent to the glioblastoma tumor. It’s the vicious kind of brain tumor that caused the tragic death of Hipp frontman Gord Downey.

“Safer and more effective cancer treatments may be clinically possible,” says Mike Moser, M.D., general surgery researcher at Askr College of Medicine and co-author of the recently published study. (MD) said. of Journal of Biomechanical Engineering.

“Patients with brain tumors now have another option for local treatment without opening the skull and without heat or radiation.”

A research team led by USask created 3D models of cells to demonstrate how current treatment protocols, called irreversible electroporation (IRE or NanoKnife) and high-frequency irreversible electroporation (H-FIRE), pose risks to the surrounding environment. We tested whether it could destroy glioblastoma cells while minimizing . tissue and blood vessels.

Glioblastoma is the most aggressive and deadly form of brain cancer, affecting 1 in 25,000 Canadians and 6% of cancer patients are now alive more than 5 years after diagnosis It’s just

This technique relies on how glioblastoma cells respond to electrical current. Researchers have found that smaller electric fields can kill tumor cells than kill surrounding healthy tissue.

They also found that this technique temporarily disrupted the blood-brain barrier, a semi-permeable membrane that only allows small molecules to pass from the blood to the brain.

“The blood-brain barrier prevents many therapeutic agents from reaching tumors,” said Chris Zhang, PhD, a USask biomedical engineering researcher and co-author of the study. “We’ve shown that our technology can also help open this barrier, making the brain more susceptible to chemotherapy and other treatments such as drugs that boost the immune response, helping patients to systematically fight their tumors. I can help.”

The team also included USask PhD student Lujia Ding, postdoctoral fellow Zheng Feng, PhD, and researchers from Fudan University and Shanghai University in China. This project is part of an extended collaboration between Moser and Zhang’s former USask doctoral student, Dr. Bing Zhang, PhD.

This work was funded by CREATE and Discovery Grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, a grant from the Royal University Hospital Foundation, and a grant to Dr. Bing Zhang and his team from the National Natural Science Foundation of China. provided.

The next step in research is to develop a method to combine tumor ablation and immunotherapy using H-FIRE technology.

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